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Free Minds & Free Markets

Socialism Destroys

Increased government control wrecks economies and ruins lives.

(Page 2 of 2)

Again, Venezuelans applauded. Taking from the rich is popular. Ramon Muchacho, a former mayor in Caracas, told Alvarez that when Chavez seized businesses, people were "clapping so hard. They were like, 'Oh, finally there is somebody here making social justice!'"

But government grabbing private businesses creates shortages. Governments aren't good at running supermarkets. One Venezuelan refugee told Alvarez, "It's like the apocalypse. No food. No medicine."

But in the U.S., socialism still holds appeal.

"Plenty of (socialist) countries are nothing like Venezuela," says comedian John Oliver.

"When I talk about democratic socialism, I am not looking at Venezuela," says Sen. Bernie Sanders, "not looking at Cuba. I'm looking at countries like Denmark, like Sweden."

So many American politicians now cite Denmark as a socialist paradise that Denmark's prime minister felt compelled to go on TV to say, "Denmark is far from a socialist planned economy. Denmark is a market economy."

Exactly. Socialism, democratic or tyrannical, means government owns or controls businesses.

In Scandinavia, business is largely left alone. Governments don't even set a minimum wage. Economic freedom rankings give Scandinavian countries high scores on property rights and business freedom.

Those countries do have big welfare programs, but they are funded by thriving free enterprise.

In addition, many cut back on their welfare programs after they discovered they were unsustainable or discouraged work.

Think about that the next time you hear celebrities saying "Sweden" and praising socialism.

As one Venezuelan refugee told Alvarez, "You don't need the government to dictate how to live your life, how much money you should make, how your family should be treated."

Increased government control rarely helps people. It wrecks economies. It wrecks lives.

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  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I say the United States needs to open its borders wide for refugees from socialist states like Venezuela. Nothing quells the idea of socialism like the voices of those who fled its cancerous effects. Well, nothing besides actually living under it.

  • Here for the outrage||

    Bringing in refugees and supporting them with welfare will reinforce the idea that welfare is bad? How's that working in large cities?

    I've got some great property in the ghetto to show you

  • Brandybuck||

    Who the fuck said anything about giving them welfare? Get that strawman out of here, he's getting moldy.

  • Here for the outrage||

    Fine

    Where will they stay, what will they eat, what will they do, and who will pay for it?

  • Here for the outrage||

    You act like they're all fleeing Venezuela with pockets of cash and food supplies.

  • epsilon given||

    How many immigrants have come to America with little cash or food, only to carve out a good life here? Or even succeed?

    We have plenty of people who have done this. Why don't we look to their examples, and see how we can provide support for them?

    For starters, private charities should be able to provide shelter and food for refugees until they can get on their feet....

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Does a rotting zoo animal count as food supplies?

    Asking for a foreign friend.

  • GoatOnABoat||

    Straws are banned

  • vek||

    If we temporarily allowed in unlimited numbers of EDUCATED and skilled people from places like Venezuela that might well work. But not if we took in any random person.

    Cuba is a good example of this at work. Cubans are the ONLY immigrant group that actually votes right that I am aware of. Former USSR nations also seemed to work out well, and I imagine they are right/libertarian leaning as well, probably only excluded from the list of immigrant voting blocks anybody has bothered to look into because they're white, and nobody cares to pay attention.

  • Here for the outrage||

    In libertarian utopia, this is a great plan.

    In a country where half the population is obese and/or on welfare, there is no way in hell we can invite starving people and not provide them any assistance. Poppa government will gladly step in

  • Earth Skeptic||

    Hmm, so if half the existing population is obese, and the immigrants are starving...

    New reality TV concept: combine Soylent Green and Hunger Games?

  • vek||

    You did notice I said educated and skilled right?

    If we let in uneducated dirt farmers, we would have the very welfare problems you mention, and many other problems too. But if we're talking about letting in Venezuelan doctors, engineers, programmers, etc things would sort themselves out well enough. Hell, we could even slap on an English requirement, although many from these classes would already speak English, and the rest would probably learn it promptly anyway.

    By only allowing in those that will succeed here with almost 100% certainty, you don't have the welfare issues. If they needed any handouts it would be for a matter of months or something, and after that doctors and engineers are VERY much in the net tax payer category, so we'd more than make it up anyway.

    Dish washers NEVER pay in as much as they take, whether native born or foreign. Those are the reason I am against letting in unskilled people though, because they're real problems the open borders crowd likes to ignore.

  • vek||

    You did notice I said educated and skilled right?

    If we let in uneducated dirt farmers, we would have the very welfare problems you mention, and many other problems too. But if we're talking about letting in Venezuelan doctors, engineers, programmers, etc things would sort themselves out well enough. Hell, we could even slap on an English requirement, although many from these classes would already speak English, and the rest would probably learn it promptly anyway.

    By only allowing in those that will succeed here with almost 100% certainty, you don't have the welfare issues. If they needed any handouts it would be for a matter of months or something, and after that doctors and engineers are VERY much in the net tax payer category, so we'd more than make it up anyway.

    Dish washers NEVER pay in as much as they take, whether native born or foreign. Those are the reason I am against letting in unskilled people though, because they're real problems the open borders crowd likes to ignore.

  • BigT||

    Poor John Stossel, he doesn't realize we merely need just and compassionate leaders to make socialism work! Bernie 2020!!

  • Johnimo||

    I can only assume you're being facetious. There are no compassionate socialists.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "That wasn't *real* socialism"

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Once again it all depends on how one defines socialism.

    If "socialism" means Venezuela, then yeah, horrible.
    If "socialism" means Norway, then it is still bad, but not gulag-level bad.

  • DesigNate||

    Except "socialism" doesn't mean Norway because they are a market based economy....

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Scandinavian nations do have very strong market economies but they are Socialist.

    The states own numerous companies wholly and partly. They also have large welfare states, which of course is owning and controlling the means of production for healthcare and charity.

  • JesseAz||

    Socialism =/= welfare state. Stop twisting the definitions of words. You can have a capitalist system with high tax rate and welfare programs, it doesn't make it socialist. You're pushing the same idiocy as Bernie and Cortez.

  • Brandybuck||

    Except that Norway is not socialist. Norway is a capitalist nation with a very very large welfare state funded by a nationalized petroleum industry. They are essentially Alaska.

  • vek||

    Although you're an idiot Jeff, I do think it is important for conservatives and libertarians to acknowledge the differences between Cuba and Norway, Sweden, etc.

    Their economies are NOT centrally planned for the most part. They just have high ass taxes that slows their economic growth. The way they do it has a TON of downsides, but is not necessarily going to make them collapse immediately. These distinctions actually help make the point that many/most proggie positions are bad though, it doesn't hurt the cause of liberty IMO.

  • ||

    Scandinavia is driven first by free markets. Norway pays for its welfare through oil profits.

    This is another part of the left-wing narrative that has to be killed.

  • vek||

    Yup, Norway can only afford to do what it does because it is the Saudi Arabia of Europe. Sweden and other places that are similar have sky high taxes on what we would consider barely middle of the middle class type people. There is no other way to fund such a system.

  • JesseAz||

    Norway isn't socialist retard. The state doesn't direct its economy. In fact it invests heavily in its private sector.

    You're an idiot jeff.

    Link

    It has a lower capital tax rate than us for fuck's sake.

    Socialism is not a wide distribution of government programs. Socialism is a control of the means of labor and markets.

  • JParker||

    How is government investing heavily (and choosing where to invest) in the private sector not directing it's economy?

  • JesseAz||

    It does so through the stock market like a normal investor, not through direct subsidy or carveouts. I would suggest you read up on their public investment fund. It's a lot closer to an index fund than anything. They aren't picking winners and losers directly. Hint, it was in the article I linked.

  • buybuydandavis||

    I love it how the SJWs always put up white ethnostates are their ideal societies

  • chemjeff radical individualist||

    Once again it all depends on how one defines socialism.

    If "socialism" means Venezuela, then yeah, horrible.
    If "socialism" means Norway, then it is still bad, but not gulag-level bad.

  • MatthewSlyfield||

    "If "socialism" means Norway, then it is still bad, but not gulag-level bad."

    Yet.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    ^This.

    Norway is only hanging on because of oil and they have a tiny population and there are market economy features built in.

    China is controlled 100% by the Chinese Communist party but it has not imploded. This is likely because of market economy features tolerated.

    This actually makes the capitalism argument stronger. Socialist states cannot survive without capitalism mixed in.

  • Qsl||

    So lay it out.

    Exactly what polices would you be in favor of and, the most important, how will you pay for them?

    This renewed McCarthism is growing tiresome of decrying you can't fight ideologies when it applies to Islam, but shuddering in horror at the prospect of public parks.

    You can only beat the scapegoat of socialism for so long when, much like the D.A.R.E. campaign, people stop taking you seriously.

  • DesigNate||

    Nobody "shudders in horror at the prospect of public parks". What the fuck are you talking about?

  • Qsl||

    I've been here long enough and have listened to the PRIVATIZE E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G rhetoric to gather at least some bristle at even the notion of national parks or how driver's licenses are creeping socialist authoritarianism towards a one world government.

    So spare me the faux outrage. You guys are your own worst enemies.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    And you're an idiot.

  • vek||

    Well, the fact is privatizing everything WOULD probably result in improvements. One can see examples of this working in practice all over the place. From utilities being privatized (but they raise they rates! Oh noes! Well, the artificially low rates are why government utilities often can't keep up with maintenance, etc. Shit gots to be paid for!), charter schools (that get the same or better results for half the money on average), etc.

    That said, as a realist, I'm okay with accepting plenty of stuff being in government hands still. But that doesn't mean we can't/shouldn't hold them to better account on results. It also doesn't mean we shouldn't privatize stuff where it is easily doable.

  • Qsl||

    When people are using things like parks, emergency services, or the ever popular roads as proof that socialism works (and as an argument that nationalized healthcare would be just as easy), and libertarians immediately fire back that Yellow Stone should be turned into private resort, complete with with building a roller-coaster through the park (because hey, it's their property and the market never has any missteps); you're not doing yourselves any favors.

    And instead of calmly engaging people who want a grand welfare state with why the libertarian alternative would be better, the libertarian response is "SOCIALISM DESTROYS!!!11! THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY SYSTEM WAS MADE WITH BLOOD!". you're not doing yourselves any favors.

    Or-

    within the list of failed socialist states; compare that to a list of libertarian states.

    Get the picture? Even with ALL the catastrophic failures of socialism, it is still preferable (and continues to be) to libertarianism.

    At some point you have to take responsibility (foreign concept, I know) that maybe it isn't that people are dumb or brainwashed or not nearly as woke as the libertarians, but the flag-bearers for libertarianism, worse than making a piss-poor case, are actually reviling people from even listening.

    The failures of socialism isn't an argument for libertarianism.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""The failures of socialism isn't an argument for libertarianism.""

    Maybe, maybe not.

    But the failures of socialism is an argument that socialism doesn't work.

  • sparkstable||

    Exactly. If someone starts the discussion with "socialism is great!" then the right response isn't necessarily how libertarianism works. That is irrelevant as long as the original speaker still believes in socialism. Thus, the right response is why socialism does, in fact, destroy a dead to death (various programs fo so at various rates).

  • vek||

    QSl, I agree that the knee jerk extreme arguments are no way to convince anybody. I usually don't use such arguments when discussing such things with n00bs to the concept of libertarianism. I use specific examples, like charter schools doing better for less money. I also throw out that I personally am OKAY with compromise on many issues.

    Should Yellowstone be privatized? Maybe. But it's not a point I'm going to argue with somebody, because that would be problem # 6,348 on my list of shit to deal with.

    But, yeah, the biggest problem with pushing lbiertarianism is libertarians. Especially the over the top purist ones. That kind of discussion is fine here, amongst people who should already know what is what, but not when you're talking to outright socialists, or even moderates, and trying to convince them of anything.

  • Qsl||

    I've actually had pretty good success with simply asking "how are you going to pay for it". I mean universal healthcare and state sponsored university are fabulous ideas, but when it comes to brass tacks, where is the money going to come from?

    Hopefully they are at least thinking in more economic terms of how these things work, and how having robust markets can actually be an ally in not only funding a welfare state, but minimizing the necessity of the welfare state in the first place (which is half the battle right there).

    The other side of the coin is accepting that libertarianism may not be the right solution to every problem, and contorting it to fit in every instance just makes you look like fools.

    Another commenter makes the point of focusing on what works, and until libertarianism can prove itself in the real world, it is just a bunch of cranks watching the world burn.

  • vek||

    How are you gonna pay for it is a VERY strong argument with many proposed things.

    I also like to bring up how much lower the standard of living is in Europe for the overwhelming majority of people. Americans think Europe is just like here, but with a bunch of free shit. Who WOULDN'T love that, right? But bring up that Americans have 50-100% higher PRE TAX income than most wealthy European countries...Then bring up that their taxes are often double our highest rates, and come in at merely middle of the middle class income levels... Bringing their REAL take home pay down to a mere 1/3-1/2 of Americans... Month or two wait times for that "free healthcare..." Well, that doesn't sound so nice all of a sudden.

    Hit it home by talking about their pathetically small dwellings, small/no cars, and all the rest... People view Europe through rose colored glassed. It ain't all it's cracked up to be.

    Personally, I think almost any libertarian/market solution will tend to be better than a government run one... But there are some that are just a pain in the ass to implement IRL, or aren't THAT much different/better than the gov running it. I'm of the mind we go for the low hanging fruit first, and can circle back around to other things later. Libertarian solutions to various issues HAVE almost all been used and proven to be awesome in countless instances all around the world. They just haven't all been tried in a single country at once.

  • Angelique||

    The problem with people feeling richer that Europeans is taht too many of them have a rude awakening when they go into bankruptcy due to medical expenses.

    Or they have to go to GoFundMe to beg strangers to help them.

    Or maybe they have an Nobel prize medal that they can auction off, if they are lucky.

    The Europeans system is not meant to be the best, but to keep the worst from happening And the worst can be very bad indeed.

    (By the way, maternal death rates are higher in the U.S. than in Europe - and now it seems they are rising)

  • Qsl||

    The problem with people feeling richer that Europeans is taht too many of them have a rude awakening when they go into bankruptcy due to medical expenses.

    Exactly how much (and how many) is that verses the cost of the NHS or even catastrophic healthcare insurance? Spending billions to solve a million dollar problem doesn't seem particularly wise.

    Nor is the US model strictly private, but a hybrid version implemented in perhaps the worst way possible. Singapore also has a hybrid version, which has comparable maternal death rates to Europe... at a lower cost.

  • vek||

    Also, one can simply chalk that up to poor planning.

    We DO have far higher incomes. We DO have a far higher standard of living. Even after healthcare is factored in. Perhaps people should just take one fewer vacation a year, or buy a new car every 7 years instead of every 6, and pile that cash up.

    Most of the complaints people have about our financial system are because people don't know how to handle money. There's no saving the low income people... They tend to just be disasters no matter what you do... But history shows that most of the middle class CAN and WILL be fiscally responsible when they are educated on how to do it, and it is the social expectation placed on them. People in the USA used to save prodigiously. We could easily again.

    Then we have MORE than Europe in every way, and no downsides. Sounds like a good plan to me!

  • JesseAz||

    Apparently the squirrels wanted to make you look fucking retarded twice.

  • sarcasmic||

    Because "from each according to ability, to each according to need" works for families, all we need to do is transform society into one big family. Then we'll all take care of each other. Everything will be great.

    Compare this to capitalism where profits are the only thing that matters. Everyone is only out for themselves. They don't care about anyone else. That's why the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Yeah, yeah, yeah, the poor have lots of stuff. But it's all cheap Chinese crap. It isn't real wealth because it isn't made to last. It's just crap that the capitalists peddle so they can get richer.

    One of these systems is run with good intentions, while the other runs on greed.

    Which will have the best outcome? Bad intentions or good intentions?

    Good intentions, obviously.

    Alright. Now pick up a shovel. Get to work. We've got a road to Hell that needs building.

  • Ersatz||

    ^Nice finish there.... made me smile.

  • mtrueman||

    " It isn't real wealth because it isn't made to last."

    It isn't real wealth if you have to go into debt to obtain it. You borrow your way to servitude, not wealth.

  • sarcasmic||

    Who is putting a gun to your head and forcing you to go into debt?

  • mtrueman||

    Voluntary servitude is even more contemptible. When did Libertarians give up on the ideals of independence and autonomy?

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""When did Libertarians give up on the ideals of independence and autonomy?""

    Independence would allow people who choice to use debt to do so and to assume the responsibility of their choice, for better or worse. It's not servitude if was your choice.

    I would be curious about your definition of servitude.

  • mtrueman||

    "I would be curious about your definition of servitude."

    It's being beholden to someone, especially financially. You seem to have a very benign view of indebtedness, which to most I would have thought was antithetical to the freedom you claim to cherish.

    A bit of Inherent Vice:

    "We've been in place forever. Look around. Real estate, water rights, oil, cheap labor- all that's ours, it's always been ours. And you, at the end of the day what are you? one more unit in this swarm of transients who come and go without pause here in the sunny Southland, eager to be bought off with a car of a certain make, model, and year, a blonde in a bikini, thirty seconds on some excuse for a wave- a chili dog, for Christ's sake." He shrugged. "We will never run out of you people. The supply is inexhaustible."

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    ""You seem to have a very benign view of indebtedness, which to most I would have thought was antithetical to the freedom you claim to cherish.""

    I get that some people don't get it. But the freedom to voluntary enter into a contract, including one that may a include a level of debt (home ownership for example) does not equate to servitude.

  • mtrueman||

    "But the freedom to voluntary enter into a contract, including one that may a include a level of debt (home ownership for example) does not equate to servitude."

    You're not in the business of lending money, are you? I figure you belong on the borrowing side of the equation. You'd probably have a more sober view if you were the lender.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    The last time I borrowed money was for a student loan. I signed a promissory note promising to pay it back. I paid it in full as per the agreement and my promise.

    Does my promise to pay it back make it servitude? No.

    But I totally expect someone to have issues (lender) when someone (borrower) can't live up to the contract which was entered voluntarily.

    Currently I'm debt free.

  • mtrueman||

    "Currently I'm debt free."

    Then surely you can appreciate the degree of freedom you achieve by being debt free.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    That doesn't help your argument because even though I'm debt free now, I did not feel like I was in servitude with anyone. My debt was a contract I entered into voluntarily which I honored.

  • mtrueman||

    "I did not feel like I was in servitude with anyone. "

    We say this again and again: Feelings trump facts. If you borrow money, you are under obligation o repay the lender. Being under this obligation is a diminishment of freedom. Consider this: when you were paying off your debt, you couldn't spend your money as freely as as can now that you are debt free. It's quite simple and applies whether you committed yourself to contractual obligations or more informal means.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    You have a weird, overly wide definition of servitude.

  • Sevo||

    mtrueman|10.10.18 @ 12:07PM|#
    "Voluntary servitude is even more contemptible."

    trueman is nothing if not consistently imbecilic:
    mtrueman|8.30.17 @ 1:42PM|#
    "Spouting nonsense is an end in itself."

  • epsilon given||

    One of the ironies of "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need" explains perfectly what happens in a Capitalist economy, whether it be an employer and employee exchanging needs and abilities, or whether it be some rich person deciding that a charity -- or even an individual -- needs help, and he has the ability to provide for that help.

    So "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need" is a fantastic personal creed. It produces Capitalism.

    But Socialism turns this on its head. Individuals aren't trusted to work out the needs and abilities of the people around them, so we have bureaucrats to decide these things instead. The result is always horrific. And it never seems to dissipate into "pure Communism", like Marx promised it would...

  • Hank Phillips||

    Observe how looters always steer away from mentioning the initiation of force...

  • buybuydandavis||

    From each according to their ability is called slavery

  • epsilon given||

    "From each according to their ability" is only slavery when Marxist do it, because Communist bureaucrats decide what an individual's abilities are, and then take those resources and skills by force.

    When individuals sit down, take an inventory of their abilities, and offer services and goods that fit in their abilities (and priced within the abilities of their potential customers), this is the foundation of free market economies.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Capitalism is what marxist converts called monarchic mercantilism. Since 1972 there has been a better alternative, best described in 20th Century English, not 19th Century German. Libertarian is about the Initiation of force v Freedom, not who owns title to stock, slaves or plantation acreage. Today's socialists want to ban electricity (energy slaves) and return to the chattel system through carbon taxes. The Dems lost by letting them write their platform.

  • Rich||

    As one Venezuelan refugee told Alvarez, "You don't need the government to dictate how to live your life, how much money you should make, how your family should be treated."

    Need's got nothing to do with it.

  • Conchfritters||

    When I was in southern Sweden the Swedes would go over to Copenhagen to buy their Volvo's and Saab's because they were cheaper there. Sweden also controls all of the liquor stores - people on the ferry between Helsingoør and Helsingborg would have two wheel carts stacked with booze on their way back to Sweden because it cost less and was easier to buy. But Sweden is bigger than California, with a population the size of Chicago. The have great resources, and they tax the living shit out of everything. But also note Sweden has a market economy for just about everything except for education and healthcare. And Sweden also respects the rule of law and has very little corruption. You don't have to bribe anyone to open a burrito stand.

  • JesseAz||

    They are also one of the most homogeneous white countries on the planet, which is why liberals love them.

  • buybuydandavis||

    When asked for their ideal societies, Lefties will always name a white ethnostate

  • Shirley Knott||

    Was there anything, anything at all, about which Marx was both original and correct?

  • Conchfritters||

    Partially correct - if anything the busts have been less severe. Stock market crashes in the 1800s were horrendous. And we haven't seen anything like what happened in 1929 since 1929.

  • newshutz||

    "busts have been less severe" and the recoveries have taken longer. This is the effect of a fiat currency.

    OTOH, the Great Depression was caused by mismanagement of the currency by the Federal Reserve.

  • JesseAz||

    Crashes in the 1800s were deeper and shorter, and the recoveries shorter and higher. It wasn't until 1929 that the feds decided they could do better and nearly tripled the average length of a recession.

  • epsilon given||

    The Austrian School of Economics makes a strong case that boom and bust cycles aren't the result of pure Capitalism, but are the result of governments forcing interest rates to be lower than the market would typically make them, producing the illusion that there's plenty of money to be loaned about, creating a bubble of inflation that pops when the loans come due.

    I have yet to see anything that disabuses me of the notion that this model is correct.

    There's a *lot* of bad stuff blamed on "pure free market forces" that have a surprising amount of heavy-handed government regulation for something that's supposed to be "purely free market"....

  • Sevo||

    "There's a *lot* of bad stuff blamed on "pure free market forces" that have a surprising amount of heavy-handed government regulation for something that's supposed to be "purely free market"...."

    Turd, above, claims the mortgage market in 2008 was a 'free market', and that proves market failures.
    Turd is an ignoramus.

  • vek||

    That has certainly happened in at least many cases. I would suspect that many booms/busts did happen because of the market too though, but I suspect they were the more mild ones, and corrected a lot faster if they weren't interfered with.

  • Angelique||

    The problem with busts is taht they may lead to panic.

    And no one in charge wants to handle panicking people. So they have to be seen DOING something. So they do it. Good , bad, or indifferent. But it keeps people quieter instead of stampeding.

  • vek||

    That's often NOT how it was handled in the past. People dealt with it. They would deal with it again, if they were simply TOLD that there is nothing to be done but let bad investments get liquidated, and everything will sort itself out.

    Remember how many people even on the GENUINE LEFT, not the corporatist left, who were calling for letting the banks and their investors eat shit? That was the proper response. If that had happened investors, and banks would have acted more rationally going forward. Instead it reinforced the idea that they'll simply get bailed out if they make bad decisions. BAD PRECEDENT to set.

  • Angelique||

    A system that can get into a bust each time someone tampers with it is NOT a robust system.

    Reminds me of the saying "If builders built houses the way programmers build programs, the first woodpecker that came along would destroy civilization". And real life is FULL of woodpeckers.

    So the solution is not to dream of a world without woodpeckers, but to build something that can withstand ir

  • epsilon given||

    The Free Market isn't built, it organically grows. And tinkering with interest rates is the equivalent of spraying plant growth hormone on a dandelion: the plant grows so fast that it dies. The dandelions would grow just fine if left to their own growth patterns.

    You can't build an economy. The economy pops up spontaneously, from hundreds of millions of people deciding what they have to offer, and what they can pay for what others offer. This always happens, regardless of what bureaucrats try to do to prevent it.

    The system is robust enough that it can still withstand the booms and busts inflicted on it by manipulating interest rates, and otherwise making loans easier to get. Not only that, but interest rates are manipulated in an effort to prevent these booms and busts. You'd think that after some time, that we'd wise up and convince ourselves that these manipulations aren't having the effects we think they should have.

  • epsilon given||

    Incidentally, what you are saying comes across as saying "if an engine busts every time someone puts sand in the transmission fluid and sugar in the gas tank, then it is NOT a robust system." At some point, you have to ask the person doing this, "Why are you even putting sand in something that's hermetically sealed to keep sand out? Why are you trying to run your engine on sugar? The engine would run fine if you would just leave it alone!"

  • GoatOnABoat||

    Duck soup?

  • GoatOnABoat||

    Maybe if they stopped making crappy cars...

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    If we need any extra money, we can always come harvest your organs for fun and profit.

  • loveconstitution1789||

    Making crappy cars tends to affect sales.

  • Sevo||

    Sarah Palin's Buttplug|10.10.18 @ 9:16AM|#
    "Ford layoffs could hit 24,000 amid Trump's trade policies"

    Grasp them straws turd. That and lying is all you got.
    Oh, and fuck off.

  • JesseAz||

    There's that word "could" again. Let us know when it happens.

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    I'd guess if you pooled the fortunes of the celebrities quoted in this article you'd have enough money to set up a pretty good test commune.

    John Stossel should propose the celebrities prove their assertions by having them set up a private corporation that operates as an umbrella for a commune that includes a lot of the willfully unemployed in Seattle and other west coast cities.

    Since another celebrity belief is that corporations aren't significantly regulated, they should have free reign to completely prove that communism or democratic socialism works.

  • DesigNate||

    If Beyonce took that $300MM she made for a two hour show and gave it to every man, woman, and child in America (as a good socialist should), we'd all be $1 richer.

    Oh wait...

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    Good point...

  • Brandybuck||

    Libraries? Most libraries were initially created by private charity, including the notable Carnegie libraries. The core purpose of a library (back when people still read books) was to house books for lending. This can be done without the crazy municipal edifices modern libraries have become. And even government libraries have been traditionally maintained at the local level by cities and counties, with nearly every town and burg in the county having a locally financed public library.

    The idea that libraries are a result of socialism is utter bullshit. Do these people even know what socialism is? Even Scandinavian style 60% income tax "socialism" is necessary to fund libraries. They can be funded with a minuscule fraction of local property taxes.

  • mtrueman||

    Do you have any word on Murakami Haruki's latest novel, released today, if I'm not mistaken.

  • ||

    Do these people even know what socialism is?

    No, they do not, which is why they think Denmark is socialist.

  • mtrueman||

    He is a Japanese novelist. You may know him by his English name, Haruki Murakami. His 'Windup Bird Chronicle' was excellent, though his later work is weaker, I think.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    brandy,
    Good point. In my city, the library was the main-floor excuse to build a new city hall to house alderthingies (municipal pop of well under 100K) and bureaucrats with over-active tape measures. Other than the new fire station (magnificently over-built tower of glass) it's the only new thing in the crumbling town core over the past two decades.
    Meanwhile, people built their own little book-mobiles/lending libraries (glorified dog houses on a pole) for neighbours to trade books/CDs/etc. and when somebody complains the city orders it removed.

  • epsilon given||

    And I still can't help but notice that the *best* libraries are maintained privately, by universities and colleges.

  • Hank Phillips||

    You can donate to Gutenberg.org THAT is a walloping library that also accepts scans of old books as a donation.

  • Ron||

    Public libraries were originally funded by an evil oil rich philanthropist and were not a part of the federal government of course neither were schools until the federal government took over

  • Angelique||

    Socialism is a straw man.

    The real enemy has always been the Prussian Model

    (And Hayek called it so). The Austrian School did not fight Marxism, but the German Historical School.

    And the Historical School was complacent, because it defended a model that WORKED.

    The real enemy has always been Friedrich List. Because until WWII Marxism was to be found in the talks of cafe revolutionaries. Friedrich List had laid the blueprint for the Second Reich, which brought prosperity to Germany and turned an agricultural backwater into an industrial powerhouse that two world wars could not destroy. Bismarck was no socialist, nor libertarian. He just did what worked.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Marxism, and all its bastard children, are evil.

  • Angelique||

    And what has Marxism to do with the Prussian model? It was implemented while Marx just wrote theory and future Marxists were cafe revolutionaries.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Angelique cannot say what moved the German and Austro-Hungarian economies before WWI. Bayer acetylized salicylic acid, then morphine. That and the explosives powering Krupp cannons were its income--better living through chemistry. American prohibitionists worked to undermine this empire, and as the Hague convention gained adherents, a pretext was found for WWI. Communism took Russia out of the war and the US went in to collect on war loans. Afterward, Germany exported heroin to a buzz-starved Republican Amerika. The income tax as prohi tool wrecked the German and US economies and Hoover's Moratorium on Brains relieved Germany from debt repayment and thus rearmed the Reich. The perfessers cited are all strawmen. Bayer and its crony politicians needed belligerent fanatics to frighten foreigners into letting her export heroin to primitive populations. The armistice documents from WWI and Versailles treaty bristle with chemical drugs verbiage, and WWII was a repeat of the same sort of mistakes. Not pleasant, but true.

  • Angelique||

    I was quoting the Encyclopedia Britannica, which noted that after an initial period of liberalization which gave a great spurt of growth, there was a worldwide depression in 1873. As a response Bismarck got great control of the economy and developed a welfare state.

    And Germany became the industrial powerhouse that remains today (after two world wars were unable to destroy it)

    In the Third World, it was the Prussian model that people were enthusiastic about. Japan and Korea followed the script (and you can easily find Friedrich List books in these counries). In Ireland, Arthur Griffith, who had read List came up with a blueprint to industrialize and diversity Ireland's economy (which, thanks to England, only exported live cattle and people). Griffith died before he could implement any of it, but Sean Lemass did it.

  • vek||

    That poor Alvarez chicks family sure has had a bad run of luck!

    But yeah, socialism is horrible. State ownership and other more extreme measures are what really will take down a nation every time. We I said above, well managed welfare states with free-ish economies can survive, but it has BAD side effects... Like slower growing economies, discouraging work, etc.

    Personally, I think nations should be free to do that if they want... It just shouldn't be America. Let these asshole progs move to Canada or Sweden if they thing it's so friggin' awesome. I'd bail on America if a decent sized country ever went full on libertarian, so if they already have their utopia why aren't they moving there???

  • mtrueman||

    "State ownership and other more extreme measures are what really will take down a nation every time. "

    During war time, socialist or communist societies do rather well. Communist Vietnam sent capitalist USA back home with tail tucked. Communist USSR destroyed the Nazi military and almost leveled Berlin. Communist Cuba/North Korea etc beat capitalist South African etc. People whose main motivation is greed don't seem to make much of a fighting force. Look at the pitiful record of capitalist USA vs. the Taleban who are feudalistic and motivated by family and clan loyalties.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    "" Look at the pitiful record of capitalist USA vs. the Taleban who are feudalistic and motivated by family and clan loyalties.""

    The Soviets didn't fair any better with the Taliban.

  • mtrueman||

    "The Soviets didn't fair any better with the Taliban."

    Reagan managed to out-socialist the Russians through his programme to redistribute stinger missiles from wealthy American taxpayers to needy Afghan tribespersons.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    And you think that's socialism?

  • Sevo||

    That dumbshit never "thinks".

  • mtrueman||

    If it were capitalism, those stingers would have been bought and sold in the free market, as god intended.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    Just because you decide to give some free shit to people in a limited circumstance you're automatically not a capitalist?

  • mtrueman||

    The way property is distributed is the key distinguishing feature, is it not? Reagan giving away weapons for free that could have been sold on the market doesn't seem the act of a capitalist.

  • epsilon given||

    Capitalist societies are often limited by notions that we need to play nice; it wasn't just Communist USSR that destroyed the Nazi military. We won WWII in no small part because we were willing to be as brutal as the Germans against Germans, and as brutal against the Japanese as the Japanese.

    The Vietnam War was stagnant until Nixon declared that if we're going to be involved, we might as well fight the thing.

    We *still* lost, though, because after the cease-fire, we promised to support South Vietnam if things heated up again, and by the time they did, Nixon had resigned, and the Democrats in Congress refused to fund the Southern Vietnamese. Something about having sympathy for Communists, I guess.

    The United States, in particular, is a funny beast: a good portion of us doesn't like to fight war, and will do anything to keep out of it -- but once we're committed, we want to go ALL THE WAY, and get it done, and get it done right the FIRST time, so that problems won't rear their ugly head later. In other words, to many of us, war should be an "on/off" switch; unfortunately, there are many people in America who think that war should be a dial -- that you can have a little bit of it, and if your opponents are mean, you dial it up a little bit, maybe -- and this is the way LBJ tried "fighting" the Vietnam War. It's a *horrible* way to fight, too.

  • mtrueman||

    "Capitalist societies are often limited by notions that we need to play nice; it wasn't just Communist USSR that destroyed the Nazi military"

    We tell ourselves this, but the reality is something different. During the fighting in Northern France between Allies and Nazis, it was the Allies who racked up larger numbers of collateral damage French civilian victims, thanks to their preference to heavy explosives, if memory serves. In the more recent conflicts between Israel and Hezbollah, it's Israel who manages to kill more civilians.

    "Nixon had resigned, and the Democrats in Congress refused to fund the Southern Vietnamese. Something about having sympathy for Communists, I guess."

    Just think of it, If we had played our cards right, we could *still* be at war with Vietnam.

  • Angelique||

    Alas, it WAS the Communist USSR that destroyed the Nazi military.

    Facts are stubborn things.

    In the war, Stalin was willing to fight to last Russian. Churchill and Roosevelt were also willing to fight to the last Russian.

  • Angelique||

    I would recomend to you that you read "Democracies against Hitler" by Alexander J Groth, which is a sobering read.

  • vek||

    Thing is, the USSR would have failed miserably if the USA hadn't been backing them. It was our evil capitalist pig production capacity that won the war. Russian troops certainly, but largely American supplies. ALSO the fact is we could have and would have got it done if we'd wanted to... But since the USSR was oh so happy to take most of the casualties, why not let them?

  • Angelique||

    Again read Alexandear J. Groth. According to him, the material help that the USA gave the USSR was marginal. But, as he said, wars are won or lost on the margins When you need 200, 180 will not do

    And it was not so much that the Russians took the casualties, but that they tied up the Nazi military machine. The bulk of the German Army was in the East. There were only a few divisions in Western Europe that could be taken down by the Allies. If the bulk of the Nazi Army had been in Western Europe, D Day would have never happened.

    Facts are stubborn things.

  • mtrueman||

    "Alas, it WAS the Communist USSR that destroyed the Nazi military."

    I agree, more or less. The allies did make important contributions, though. Stalin was constantly urging the allies to invade Europe and increase their bombing campaign against German cities, and the Allies did as Stalin asked.

  • vek||

    I probably know more about the nuances of WWII history than damn near anybody... I was keeping it to the Readers Digest version. The USSR got their production back up after the "hump" in the war when the Germans started getting pushed back... Without US supplies before then, they would have crumbled. Hell, the UK would have crumbled long before that without us supplying them. But even towards the end, we were sending them a large portion of certain types of supplies, some other things they were producing mostly on their own.

    As things happened, they did most of the fighting, and we did most of the supplying. Don't forget the US almost single handed (there were Brits, and even French and others floating around in small numbers) took down the Japanese too. The Russians didn't help us out there!

    Short version is no USA, no victory.

  • Angelique||

    Which means that we could not be buying clothes "made in Vietnam"

    As it happened with World War II We beat the Germans and Japanese, and then had to buy their cars.

  • Kirk Solo||

    SO you don't know much about History do you?

    look into the Paris Peace Accords 1972 in regards to your absolutely dumbass Vietnam comment. It was domestic politics that brought down South Vietnam you fucking moron. Communist USSR was supplied by American Arms and supplies to beat the Nazi's too.

    And again you obviously don't know shit about the Afghan war either. Before the forces were split to fight in Iraq the Taliban was all but eradicated. Even now their power is receding due to conditions based objectives that are policy now.

    EPIC DIPSHIT

  • mtrueman||

    "SO you don't know much about History do you?"

    I suggest you read a history book or two if you want to learn about. Relying on my word is not a good idea.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    Uh, we don't need more progressives up here. Take care of your own assholes, vek.

  • vek||

    Damn it! You Canadian then?

    Maybe we can convince all the progs in both our countries to move to Sweden or something... It really is the best solution. If I was a progtard I would be all about moving to some country that already was what I want out of a government... It is just such an obvious thing. I would move to a lot of countries around the world in a heartbeat if they went super far in a libertarian direction, and I suspect many other libertarians would too... I just don't understand why progs don't do it.

  • Rebel Scum||

    I guess every popular thing government does is socialism.

    Only in the infantile minds of leftists.

  • DarrenM||

    Socialism requires capitalism. The reverse is not true.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    What's funny is how socialist loving people line up to praise a country turning socialist, only to claim it wasn't really socialism a few later when the effects set in.

  • TrickyVic (old school)||

    few years later..

  • No Yards Penalty||

    It's "your kids' public school" (says Susan Sarandon), the "interstate highway system" (Rosario Dawson), "public libraries" (Jay Ferguson), "EMTs" (Ethan Embry), "workers who plow our streets" (Max Carver), and "scientists" (Danny DeVito).

    I'm gonna guess that stupid lefty skank doesn't actually send her kids to public school. And if the midget thinks govt is responsible for scientists he's as stupid as he is ugly. As for the other three, I have no idea - and I mean ZERO - who they are so why would I give a shit about what they think.

  • ||

    Faraday, Galileo, Brahe, Copernicus, Fermi, Einstein, Pasteur etc. etc., were totes products of government who 'fucking love science'.

  • Angelique||

    Well, in the Rennaissance scientists had patrons, who quite often were the rulers of their city - that is, they got paid by the government. Of course, they had to come up with inventions that those rulers thought useful. Leonardo da Vinci was hired due to his crafting fortifications and weapons of war.

  • Angelique||

    Well, private companies are good at financing science whose application they see.. But basic science, well, that has to be paid by government.

    Because if you are a private company, would you really spend money trying to determine how fruit flies inherit their eye colors?

    It is only after genetics has advanced sufficently to offer a saleable product that private companies get in the game. And who could blaime them? If there is no payoff in sight, it will be money down the drain.

    But without the basic science, there is no chance of saleable product based on it.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Gloria Álvarez is not your standard christianofascist actor reciting lines for a Republican video. She is the real deal and even supports (get this!) women having control over their own reproduction, and does not want to sent Gestapo agents to shoot kids over plant leaves. This is a huge step up from Fujimori clones tricking Reason journalists through the fog of a language barrier to get airtime. This Stossel fellow has evidently been around the block once or twice.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    It's all about the infanticide with you, isn't it?

  • Uncle Jay||

    Socialism is wonderful...if you're one of the ruling elitist turds oppressing the masses.

  • John B. Egan||

    Socialsim bad! Capitalism good! The bumper sticker logic of the ill-informed.

    Socialism 'failed' in the countries that the author named, because those countries had the unfortunate misery of having the US meddle in their politics and prop up puppet governments that allowed the 1% to bleed the wealth of their respective nations, then agreed to absurd and destructive loan terms by the World Bank to try to fix their financial issues. Socialsim in those nations was simply a response to ugly conditions brought on by free-wheeling capitalist conditions, not the other way around. It was desperation.

    These are considered to be the top Socialist nations today.... Which one of these are failing? (Here's a hint: None!)

    China.
    Denmark.
    Finland.
    Netherlands.
    Canada.
    Sweden.
    Norway.
    Ireland.

  • BigT||

    Only China really has a centrally directed economy, and even that is loosely controlled. Venezuela, Cuba, N Korea, however have much tighter controls, and the expected results.

  • mtrueman||

    "Only China really has a centrally directed economy,"

    What makes you say that? Look at their auto manufacturing industry. Would you say that's centrally controlled? There are perhaps dozen of manufacturers dispersed around the country. It's the USA that is comparatively centralized into the Big Three.

  • vek||

    And every one of those countries has massive amounts of capitalism infused into their economy... China was a toilet, UNTIL they opened up their economic system... Then they MAGICALLY started becoming a non shit hole. Also, China still doesn't have a version of Social Security, OR universal health care from what I know. Their form of socialism is mostly just "we're in charge bitches!" and that's about it.

  • renewableguy||

    This anti socialist fervor is just over the top. There are a lot of excellent socialist countries out there doing very well for their people. We could be saving money and getting more services that make a better society to live in.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Fuckimg commie. Shilling for human slavery.

  • Spookk||

    Any time you try to equate socialism and democratic socialism, you waste your time/argument. They are not the same thing. Also, having some peasant from a "socialist" country talk about socialism in any form is kind of a waste of time, since most humans are bone stupid no matter where they come from, and have no idea how things work - not even their own governments.

  • Johnimo||

    How come the folks writing these articles don't give better examples? In Sweden, for instance, the top personal income tax bracket of 60 percent kicks in at $54,900. Their corporate income tax rate is 22 percent, virtually the same as is ours, recently lowered under the Trump administration. Of course the left objects to this, wanting instead to go back to the job-killing previous rate of 39%.

    When discussing this with the left, it should always be pointed out that most of them have no desire to share 60% of their pay with the rest of society. No! They merely assume that they'll be getting lots of rich people's money. In Sweden, they have universal school vouchers, anathema to the left in the US. And how about that $5.00 plus tax per gallon of gasoline, everyone's gone just LUV that, right?

  • vek||

    These are exactly the things I always bring up. Not to mention in most European countries, people think they're our equals in terms of standard of living... Which is patently false.

    Their houses are nearly 50% smaller, you either can't afford a car, or can only afford a small car, etc. Whenever I bring these objective facts up, many people go "Oh... Seriously? I didn't know that..." And then either start to realize they maybe should rethink their position on big government, or they double down.

  • mjerryfuerst||

    Silly article. Except for maybe a very small radical fringe, no one wants a socialist economy in the US

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    We need to go back to !cCarthyism so we can keep it that way.

  • tinwhistler||

    If one defines socialism as "the taking by force and transfer of wealth by a government to individuals", public works are not socialism. It makes it easier to identify the real socialist programs like Social Security, Medicare, welfare, Medicaid, unemployment benefits, food stamps, housing subsidies, employer mandated benefits, and the many other Nanny State handouts.

  • MoreFreedom||

    Your definition of socialism is unique. As the article states socialism "means government owns or controls businesses. And the politicians, via regulations and administrative laws, have a lot of control over businesses.

    Politicians' legislation/regulations allows them to pick winners and losers in business, make bets in the stock markets regarding their insider knowledge of what their legislation/regulations will do to business bottom lines, and extract campaign cash from almost all the businesses (whether the businessmen are rent-seeking cronies, or merely defending themselves from being picked a loser because their competition is paying a lot to politicians to put them out of business).

    Nothing regulates businesses like free markets. And when there are the inevitable disputes (not all people are ethical angels) that's the purpose of courts and the common law.

  • M.L.||

    Socialism destroys.

    Mass immigration leads to socialism.

    Therefore, mass immigration destroys.

  • MoreFreedom||

    Whether or not mass immigration leads to socialism is debatable. If you look at people who've migrated from socialist countries, such as Cuban exiles in Florida, you'll often find them to be the biggest advocates of less government, because they (unlike most US citizens who've never lived abroad) know what socialism is like.

    Further, a welfare state leads to socialist migrating to that state. You should advocate for eliminating the welfare state as that will ensure migrants come to contribute to society, rather than be socialist leeches. Government welfare is simply immoral, because it uses force to take from producers to give to those who don't produce. That use of force makes it an immoral endeavor, just like two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner.

  • M.L.||

    Mass immigration does lead to socialism, particularly as it's currently permitted. But you are partly correct. It depends on "who" and "why."

    The question is, how do we select for immigrants who are committed to, or at least interested in our principles of liberty? Eliminating the welfare state incentive as you suggest, by ensuring that there is zero opportunity for immigrants to receive a welfare benefit, is a good start. But also, the fact is, there are simply not that many such potential immigrants around the world, compared to the millions who come here and the billions who would, given the opportunity.

    There's a reason why American liberals and socialists, on the pages of NYT and the like, openly celebrate the revolutionary demographic makeover of the country. They cheer the mass immigration scheme that has continued for decades and the eventual minority status of whites which they see as inevitable. The voters whose views they dislike are being replaced by a new population of voters who they imagine will be more receptive to their transformative agenda.

    Keep in mind, any degree of Liberty is rare. It's the exception to the rule in human societies. And taking a group of people and moving them to some different patch of soil does not by itself change the people; they simply bring all of their culture and beliefs and behaviors with them.

  • vek||

    Who and why are indeed the most important question.

    It is painfully clear that the idiotic and willy nilly immigration system we have now has done exactly that. I suspect that upper income foreigners, especially those from countries that have had socialism, are a lot less likely to vote for nonsense than low income people that directly benefit from such things. Hence I favor only skilled immigration. Frankly, I think we should have a political litmus test for entry too, but people would bitch and moan about it... But at the end of the day something like that would be the only way to maintain a free society for sure.

    I do find it rather ironic that you could never maintain a purist libertarian society while upholding purist libertarian values. There's something sick, but poetic, about it. LOL

  • M.L.||

    Right there with you, vek.

    Technically we do have the political litmus test of sorts. You are required to swear a solemn oath to the country and its Constitution. Now, if only we can make it meaningful.

    The only way this can happen is for a sweeping cultural revival to take place somehow, embracing American ideals and patriotism, and for the process and objective of assimilation to be resumed -- and particularly, to be assumed by our educational institutions, which would be a 180 degree change for most of them. The haters of America, the domestic enemies of the Constitution, must be removed from their positions of power and influence and ground into the dust.

  • vek||

    I agree with all of that. I just don't think it's likely. And it's certainly not likely if we maintain high levels of immigration.

    Everybody forgets that the US only stopped being a powder keg of ethnic fighting AFTER we slowed down immigration to a trickle. If it had kept up at late 1800s/early 1900s levels until the 1960s, I doubt we EVER would have had that tranquil period we did.

    At the very least if we limited it to high skill people, I think that would help with a lot of the economic issues that seem to be making people feel squeezed. High earners pull the cart in the USA today, so the more of them we have, the better off everybody is.

    But even high earning foreigners will probably cause issues for integration if they're in too high of numbers. I think the bottom line is we need a slow down period if we want things to settle down.

  • MoreFreedom||

    The one variable, more than any other, that correlates to a nation's prosperity, is its freedom. More government correlates to less prosperity, always, because it's the opposite of freedom.

    Government is part of uncivil society, because all it does is use force against individuals, starting with forcibly taking individuals' money to pay for government. Then it fines, jails, and executes individuals; all use of force actions. Which is why it should be limited to dealing with people who initiate force against others. Civil society, is that where people voluntarily associate and trade honestly with each other - it's a breath of fresh air compared to dealing with government.

  • Zoidzilla||

    No question that the 20th and, so far, the 21st centuries have been the centuries of socialism for the American people. Many Americans don't like to consider themselves socialists and prefer to think of the United States as "free enterprise." But the fact is that Americans have chosen to live under a welfare state. Sad.

  • Zoidzilla||

    No question that the 20th and, so far, the 21st centuries have been the centuries of socialism for the American people. Many Americans don't like to consider themselves socialists and prefer to think of the United States as "free enterprise." But the fact is that Americans have chosen to live under a welfare state. Sad.

  • Zoidzilla||

    Americans don't want to take risks. They prefer the fake security that socialism brings. Social Security and Medicare bring elders the security of having an income in their later years. Immigration controls bring the security that the U. S. won't be swamped by millions of people from around the world. Drug laws bring the security that everyone won't be drug addicts tomorrow.

  • Angelique||

    Well, taking risks is justified if a)the payoff is big enough and b) the price for failure is not too high.

    Would you play Russian Roulette if the payoff was a million dolalrs? To million? After all, it is only one chance in six that you will die, and think of what you can do with the money.

    Any takers?

    Unless you are seriously considering the proposal, it is better not to decry that "Americans do not want to take risks"

  • Hank Phillips||

    Looter actors and Nick need to get on a bus in Brazil where it is ABSOLUTELY illegal for anyone but the Gestapo to bear arms. Curitiba is the size of Austin and 144 holdups went down this year. The libertarian comedy skit is exaggerated, but not all that much: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTP0VL0oL7s

  • buybuydandavis||

    How long before Stossel is driven off the increasingly open postmodern Marxist Reason?

  • markm23||

    It's "your kids' public school" (says Susan Sarandon).

    Sending a bright and inquisitive kid to the typical public school is child abuse. I have to assume that either this person was neither bright nor inquisitive, or she has done enough drugs in her lifetime to have forgotten her school experiences/

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